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***The official Alden thread *** Share enthusiasm, reviews, sizing, advice, and photos. - Page 6645  

post #99661 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrDV View Post
 

whiskey monks

 


Sweet way to start the year DV.  Hope you have a great year my friend!

post #99662 of 122416
Starting year off in one of my newest and best models:



I have the ultimate indy from LS and this cigs indy... I am appreciating the indy boot more and more and may add natty CXL down the road
post #99663 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrDV View Post

whiskey monks Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)




splendid! this thread will be my undoing.

Sneakers notwithstanding, no one has ever recognized any of my shoes by make or model. I've only recognized someone else's Aldens once, on a plane - suede lwb. He seemed surprised. Heh. I don't even know anyone else who owns Aldens, besides my brother who just got his first pair for Christmas. wink.gif
post #99664 of 122416
A dude asked me if my dearly departed cigar chukkas were "J Crew Aldens" before

An older gentleman in my office wears tassels and full straps and repeatedly complements me on my own full straps and Captoe bals in the office

I notice Indy boots somewhat regularly in NYC.
post #99665 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alcibiades View Post

Starting year off in one of my newest and best models:
  Warning: Spoiler! (Click to show)


I have the ultimate indy from LS and this cigs indy... I am appreciating the indy boot more and more and may add natty CXL down the road

 

My friend, those are beautiful Indy boots, wear them in the best of health in 2015.

 

-Mike

post #99666 of 122416

I've been on StyleForum and into AE, Wolverine Boots, etc. for maybe a year and a half now?  I really only started collecting Alden shoes in April, but I've been hit by the bug hard!

 

2014:

 

- Unionmade Kirkwood Color 8 CT Boots on Commando - Barrie Last

- Moulded Shoe Brown Chumus Suede PCT Boot - Modified Last

- Alden SF Whiskey LWB - Barrie Last

- TheShoeMart Ravello Wingtip Boot - Barrie Last

 

2015:

 

- Cigar Indy on Commando - Trubalance Last

 

I'm on probably 6-8 other lists and can't wait until they drop.  2015 is going to be expensive for me!

 

As for my grail... I'd say anything Color 4.  I'd love to acquire a Color 4 boot or shoe!  (9.5 D or 10D TTS, just saying!)

post #99667 of 122416

Update to the Alden FAQ. I will continue to update a little bit over the next day or two...

 

Alden FAQ

I hope that this posting will help the new Alden Fans to find and enjoy some of the finest foot wear in the men's footwear.

 

Compiled by @borderline and @Bakes11771 and @mdubs using the combined wisdom of "The Official Alden Thread" on Styleforum, other web sources, and talking to retailers.
 

Before Buying

Where do I buy a pair?

There is a fairly comprehensive list of retailers at the end of this post. Most retailers offer the stock models and many of them offer store specific special makeups. It is highly recommended that you form a relationship with your most convenient retailer if possible.

 

What is a last?

Lasts are wood forms over which the shoe is formed on and molded to during the construction process.

 

What are the different lasts and how do they fit relative to one another?

Source: @REguy, Reference: http://www.styleforum.net/t/85589/the-official-alden-thread/13590#post_4526910

 

Anecdotal Sizing Information (Click to show)

From @NewYorkRanger

I find the Modified last (for my foot) is wider than the Barrie. 9D Modified fits me great, while 9D in Barrie is a snug fit, the E width for me in Barrie is too wide. I find the Trubalance last to be a little bit bigger overall last to the Barrie, whereas the Modified has a more tapered mid foot under the arch, opening up to a wider forefoot.

 

From @borderline:
Normal size is 10.5D, I take a 10D in Barrie and 10.5E in Leydon

From @Pastor:

I wear a 9 D in the Barrie and i've also tried a 9E in the Barrie. I won some of each and wear them both. The 9D is a little snug and the 9E is a little loose. I have a pair of 9.5 D leydon lasted LWB and they fit great. I went with a 9.5D on the grant.
9.5 E in the Dalton and most all AE's
9D in the truebalance (almost perfect fit)
9.5 D in grant ( perfect fit)
9.5 D in leydon (perfect fit)

 

From @dsmivtr:
I wear 6.5D Barrie and the 7D Grants fits well for me (actually 6.5E also works fine).

 

From @kippy:
If you size down 1/2 for barrie (say 10E to 9.5E), don't try to size down 1 and go wider (to 9EE)

 

From @MiniW:

the best way to determine fit and comfort is to ensure that the ball of your foot is at the widest part of the shoes. some people may have short toes and some people may have longer toes but using that area as a reference point has always worked well for me. Also there is just a feel when you put on a pair of shoes if it feels slightly too large or slightly too tight. If you think it fits you well and is not causing any pain or slipping off when you lace them, then they are likely the right size.

 

From @mdubs:

I am a 10.5C True to Size (TTS). I wear the following sizes on the following lasts:

-10D on Van (and Barrie Chukka)

-10.5B on Barrie and Trubalance

-10.5C on Grant, Leydon, Copley, Plaza, and Tremont (and AE 5-last for those with AE experience)

-11B on Hampton and Aberdeen

 

What do the different cordovan colors look like?

 

Alden offers two standard colors of Shell Cordovan (Black and Color #8) and three exotic colors (Cigar, Ravello, and Whiskey) and has very rarely offered a few other colors (Color #4 and Color #2).
 

Whiskey Color Variation (Click to show)

 

The Exotic Colors: Cigar, Ravello, and Whiskey Shell Cordovan (Click to show)

 

@zippy Color Comparison: http://www.styleforum.net/t/85589/the-official-alden-thread/21165#post_5102551
@makewayhomer Color Comparison: http://www.styleforum.net/t/85589/the-official-alden-thread/21300#post_5108188

Color Variation Sample: http://cdn.styleforum.net/e/ec/ecd5c41b_image.jpeg

I feel like I'm buying too many Aldens, what can I do?
1) Give up, there is no hope.
2) Stop reading this thread

3) Never talk to @mdubs

Are Alden shoes worth the price?
At the end of the day, the main benefits to Alden shoes are
1) High quality Horween leathers (Chromexcel, cordovan, and I assume suede) in unique colors
2) Willingness to work with retailers (many of whom work with customers) to develop special styles
3) Variety of well-fitting lasts
4) Recraft-ability (not necessarily by Alden, but by a variety of cobblers)
5) Decent price point compared to shoemakers that work with similar materials
6) Traditional aesthetic (high quality and stylish in a "handsome," "gentlemanly" way)
7) Alden shoes are pretty comfortable, can be very eye catching (cordovan, suede, etc tend to get tons of compliments) and overall enhance one's look.
The obvious downsides are
1) Poor quality control, particularly as they ramp production
2) Low / inconsistent availability
(Alcibiades)

 

After Buying


How should I break in my shoes?

Use “Mac’s Break-in Procedure”:
Shoes should be worn only on carpeting on three different days for a minimum of one hour in order to ascertain that the fit is proper.

What is the "pen trick"?
You put a pen where your foot joints are and then crease the shoe. This way the crease is set exactly where your joint bends and the crease is nice and even. People report varying levels of success with this, and it is generally thought to be more important for the PTB.

Will my cordovan shoes stretch?
The consensus is that cordovan stretches very little, if at all.

 

Care and Cleaning


How should I clean my cordovan shoes or boots?

 

Use the “Mac Method”:
1) Clean shoes with damp cloth

2) Brush vigorously with a horsehair brush

3) Buff with smooth cloth

4) Use wax after a minimum of fifteen wearings
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lp5nyVAjMWQ&feature=player_embedded
http://theagatineeyelet.wordpress.com/2010/10/05/the-mac-method/

Some other cleaning advice from Alden of Carmel
1. Do not use 'neutral' polish
2. Do not clean cordovan shoes using saddle soap
3. Do not attempt to clean cordovan shoes using petroleum distillates or cleaning fluids
4. Do not use any spray shines or aerosol type waterproofs
5. Do not attempt to dry wet shell cordovan shoes with heat or a heater. Wipe them dry, and allow them to dry naturally
6. Do not attempt to polish shell cordovan shoes while wet
http://www.alden-of-carmel.com/index.cfm/care_of_shell_cordovan.htm

Some cordovan cleaning advice from the Shoe Care thread
http://www.styleforum.net/t/228153/the-official-shoe-care-thread-tutorials-photos-etc/1425#post_5216113

Some cleaning advice from user MarioImpemba
http://seddylife.tumblr.com/image/36249869978

My shoes are dry and/or discolored in the creases. How can I fix this?
Alden SF recommends using a small amount of cream in the creases. This can moisturize the area and also bring up some of the natural color in the leather. Most people use either Saphir Renovateur or Venetian Shoe Cream or Alden Boot Cream.
http://www.hangerproject.com/saphir-renovateur.html
http://oakstreetbootmakers.com/accessories/venetian-shoe-cream

My cordovan shoes got wet and there are tiny round marks or bubbles. What should I do?
1) Next time try the Alden Leather Defender
2) Brush them for awhile
3) Try some Renovateur
4) Try the deer bone treatment
5) Just wait, it will go away evenutally

My cordovan shoes has some white stuff on the leather. What do I do?
This is called "bloom". One method is to use a hair dryer, hold it 6" away from the shoe, and then after it cools down use a chamois cloth and buff it for awhile. It should go away.

 

How do I care for the edges on my shoes?

This depends for the color of the dressing. For Black, I recommend the Allen Edmonds Black Heel & Sole Edge Dressing. You may also want to consider the Saphir edge dressing projects available from the hangerproject.com as well.

 

For antique edge dressing, I recommend Patrick's method, which is as follows.

 
Antique Edge Care (Click to show)
Quote:
Originally Posted by patrick_b View Post
 

I scuffed up the edge trim on one of my cigar PTB's this week. I've no idea how it occurred. I didn't want to use a dark brown edge trim as I wanted to keep the visible layers of the stacked leather sole. I only have brown & black edge trim, both AE branded.

 

To add color to the scuff, I touched it up with AE's Walnut cream polish ("Premium Shoe Polish" in the tube). For reference, AE's walnut shoes are a light to medium brown. I then applied a thin layer/small amount of AE's brown carnauba wax polish to the entire edge trim. IMO it came out well.

 

Before & After pics below. In the before images, I bumped up the exposure & sharpening to make the damage more easily visible.

 

Before:

 

 

 

 

After:

 

 

 

I want new shoelaces for my Indy Boots. What are my options?
1) Alden will mail you a pair if you ask. http://www.aldenshoe.com/
2) The Alden Madison store will sell you waxed laces for ~$6. http://aldenmadisonny.com/
3) Red Wing model 9011 will work, request them here http://www.redwingheritage.com/laces/
 

Restoration and Cobblers

 

Alden offers a restoration service. More information can be obtained from Alden directly.

http://www.aldenshoe.com/DrawOnePage.aspx?PageID=12

 

Will Alden put a different sole on my shoes?
No, Alden Restoration will now only recraft your shoes using original materials.

 

If you want to put on a different sole, your best bet may be B. Nelson.
http://www.bnelsonshoes.com/

Can I have speed hooks converted to eyelets?
B Nelson will do it for $12 per eyelet (not per pair). A standard Alden boot with 4 pairs of speed hooks would therefore run $96. The top four eyelets would be off-centered with the bottom five, which is often done to compensate for the oblong size of the speed hooks.
Here's an example: http://www.styleforum.net/t/85589/the-official-alden-thread/18000#post_4958968

 

Miscellaneous

Acronyms
LWB: Longwing Blucher
SWB: Shortwing Blucher
PTB: Plain Toe Blucher
LHS: Leisure Hand Sewn (A Penny Loafer)

 

What are the numbers on the inside of my shoe?

The numbers consist of the model number, size, and the run number. More information in the spoiler.

 

Decomposition of the Numbers Inside Aldens (Click to show)

 

The numbers visible here are 10 A/C, 6717, and 2K29 029 3.

  • The 10 A/C is the size (So these are 10C). Alden uses what is called "split" lasts, which have a size the denote the width at the widest part of the shoe and the heel.
  • The 6717 is the model number and in this case corresponds to the Cigar Shell Cordovan Leisure Hand Sewn.
  • The 2K29 029 3 is the run number and it is composed of 3 parts, the date, the order number and the pair number.
    • The 2K is the date. The 2 means that this pair was made in a year ending in 2; 2012, 2002, 1992, 1982, etc. Alden apparently felt that one digit years was sufficient fidelity. K is the month in which the shoe was completed. I believe that K would be the 11th month and therefor this pair was completed in November (of 2012).
    • The 29 029 is the order number that the vendor submitted to the factory. There seems to be no rhyme or reason to this at all.
    • The final digit(s) separated by a space is the pair number. This happens to be pair #3. This can be one or two digits depending upon where your pair fit in the run. These should match between your two shoes, otherwise you have a mismatched pair!

 

Why do they call it the Indy boot?
http://www.styleforum.net/t/85589/the-official-alden-thread/21750#post_5128364
http://www.theraider.net/information/indy_gear/boots.php
http://www.indygear.com/igboots.html

Did Alden invent the Tasseled Loafer?

It has been claimed that Alden invented the Tassel Loafer for Paul Lukas.

http://www.nytimes.com/1993/11/03/garden/the-politicization-of-tasseled-loafers.html

 

A video by Epaulet about the Alden factory
http://vimeo.com/6997219

Cordovan: A Photo Gallery of Some of Mac's Shoes
Whiskey: http://www.styleforum.net/t/85589/the-official-alden-thread/11760#post_4267010
Ravello: http://www.styleforum.net/t/85589/the-official-alden-thread/11760#post_4266962
Cigar: http://www.styleforum.net/t/85589/the-official-alden-thread/11745#post_4266729
#8: http://www.styleforum.net/t/85589/the-official-alden-thread/11745#post_4266673

Online Purchasing Options

 

Alden San Francisco (factory store - with online presence) http://www.aldenshop.com/

Alden Washington DC (factory store - no online presence) http://www.aldenshoe.com/

Alden New York (Madison Ave.) http://www.aldenmadisonny.com/

Alden of Carmel http://www.alden-of-carmel.com/index.cfm/shoes.htm

The Shoe Mart http://www.theshoemart.com/alden-shoes/bt-ald.html

Leather Soul http://www.leathersoulhawaii.com/category/brands/alden/

CitiShoes http://citishoes.com/aldmen.htm

Sherman Brothers http://www.shermanbrothers.com/brand...S&BrandCode=AL
J. Crew https://www.jcrew.com/mens_category/shoes/AldenForJCrew.jsp
Leffot http://blog.leffot.com/category/footwear/alden-brands/
Ben Silver http://www.bensilver.com/Alden.html
Moulded Shoe http://mouldedshoe.com/aldeno.html
Unionmade http://unionmadegoods.com/brands/alden/
Context http://www.contextclothing.com/brand.php?brand=Alden
Epaulet http://epauletnewyork.com/collections/alden
Renners Fine Boots & Shoes http://www.rennersbootsshoes.com/aldenshoes1.html
Sky Valet http://www.skyvalet1.com/Alden_c_13.html
Frans Boone Store http://www.fransboonestore.com/collections/Alden
The Bureau https://www.thebureaubelfast.com/brand/alden-for-the-bureau-belfast
J. Gilbert http://www.jgilbertfootwear.com/products-page/alden/
Need Supply http://needsupply.com/mens/brands/alden
Francos http://www.francos.com/

Brooks Bros. http://www.brooksbrothers.com/

Lost and Found - http://shoplostfound.com/collections/alden
Roden Gray - http://rodengray.com/collections/alden
Leatherfoot -  http://www.leatherfoot.com


Edited by mdubs - 1/1/15 at 9:14pm
post #99668 of 122416
Who is doing that Cigar Indy on commando? I might have to call and get added to that list.
post #99669 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisefi View Post
 

I've been on StyleForum and into AE, Wolverine Boots, etc. for maybe a year and a half now?  I really only started collecting Alden shoes in April, but I've been hit by the bug hard!

 

2014:

 

- Unionmade Kirkwood Color 8 CT Boots on Commando - Barrie Last

- Moulded Shoe Brown Chumus Suede PCT Boot - Modified Last

- Alden SF Whiskey LWB - Barrie Last

- TheShoeMart Ravello Wingtip Boot - Barrie Last

 

2015:

 

- Cigar Indy on Commando - Trubalance Last

 

I'm on probably 6-8 other lists and can't wait until they drop.  2015 is going to be expensive for me!

 

As for my grail... I'd say anything Color 4.  I'd love to acquire a Color 4 boot or shoe!  (9.5 D or 10D TTS, just saying!)

 

 

Good luck with your grail my friend. :-)

 

-Mike

post #99670 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by JezeC View Post

Love to see reflection pictures....

I wonder which pair of those still remain in his collection. 

The remaining pairs are as follows:

1. Color 8 Tassel (first pair of Aldens)
2. Color 8 Chukka
3. Color 8 Perf Tip Balmoral
4. Walnut Shell Strands (first pair of Shell)

All the rest have been sold or are in my for sale pile.

-Mike
post #99671 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vicious49 View Post

Who is doing that Cigar Indy on commando? I might have to call and get added to that list.

Leffot just did a run. It is my understanding that TheShoeMart and JGilbert both have or want to have active runs in production. Not sure their soles though as I went via Leffot.

-Mike
post #99672 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdubs View Post

Leffot just did a run. It is my understanding that TheShoeMart and JGilbert both have or want to have active runs in production. Not sure their soles though as I went via Leffot.

-Mike

Tassels may also have or do a run in the near future. My cigar Indys (commando, Trubalance) were made for Tassels.
post #99673 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alcibiades View Post

Starting year off in one of my newest and best models:



I have the ultimate indy from LS and this cigs indy... I am appreciating the indy boot more and more and may add natty CXL down the road


Looking really good Alci!

post #99674 of 122416
Mike ,you might want to add the following Canadian retailers to the Alden store list

Lost and Found - http://shoplostfound.com/collections/alden

Roden Gray - http://rodengray.com/collections/alden

also, Leatherfoot (http://www.leatherfoot.com) will be stocking a wide range of Alden's in March, 2015 (which I guess can be added on the next update).
post #99675 of 122416
Quote:
Originally Posted by TO Tie Guy View Post

Mike ,you might want to add the following Canadian retailers to the Alden store list

Lost and Found - http://shoplostfound.com/collections/alden

Roden Gray - http://rodengray.com/collections/alden

also, Leatherfoot (http://www.leatherfoot.com) will be stocking a wide range of Alden's in March, 2015 (which I guess can be added on the next update).

Done!
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